Tag Archives: flowers

Spring Begins Today!

Make 2017 a Colourful Year

The herald of spring is the perfect opportunity to plan your garden.

While you’re pondering on seeds, plants and bulbs, have a read through this extract from the 2017 Dairy Diary. It gives some great advice on how to plant for year-round colour.

 


 

Gardening for colour

Gardening for Colour

The garden is a naturally colourful place – green grass, brown earth, painted fences and sheds. But it’s the plants and foliage that provide that added zing, and with a little creative planning and judicious planting, they can provide it all year round.  

In poet Thomas Edward Brown’s estimation, ‘a garden is a lovesome thing’ and so it is, and it can be an even lovelier place if you think about what colours you want to see at different times of year. Haphazard planting has a lot going for it because it’s easy and can result in the garden looking beautifully chaotic for part of the year, although it can look a bit dull for the rest of the time. However, much of the pleasure in having a garden lies in deciding how you want it to look, and then watching your

However, much of the pleasure in having a garden lies in deciding how you want it to look, and then watching your masterplan come to life. No need to stick rigidly to the rules of colour theory; taking note of the general ideas can be enough, and experimenting is part of the fun. It’s your garden, after all. You can have a glorious mass of different colours if you like – and, in nature, they never seem to clash – but knowing how to use colour effectively throughout the year can make a big difference.

Whether you want your patch to be bright and cheery or a haven of peace and tranquillity will influence your colour choices. The hot colours – red, orange, yellow – are exciting, stimulating and demand attention; the cool colours – green, blue, purple – are restful, calming and recede into the background. If various sections of the garden are to have different purposes, or moods, the transitions between them are important, too, requiring subtler shades and whites.

Key effects 

  • The colour value of the plants you are intending to grow is important, too, i.e. how bright, pale or dark the flowers and foliage are likely to be, bearing in mind this is likely to change during the year.
  •  A small area of light colour in a sea of much darker vegetation creates a powerful effect.
  •  Repetition is an old trick that helps to avoid the garden looking too much of a riot. If you love red, for example, have more than one area of it.
  •  Pale colours reflect light and brighten up a shady corner.
  •  Bright colours can look wonderful and vibrant in full sun, while pastel colours will look washed out.
  •  Cool and pale colours bring a sense of depth; bright colours appear to be closer. Planted at the end of a border, pale colours make it look longer while bright colours foreshorten it.
  •  Silvery grey foliage lightens the area and cools down any nearby hot colours.

Growing plans

When choosing your plants, first and foremost, select those suited to the location and soil type of your garden, and plan to position them in the ideal spot for their individual requirements of light and shade. Otherwise, think about containers, not too big so you have the option of moving them. If you are experimenting with colours, it may be that you will want to move some plants to try other combinations; but shrubs, once established, are mostly better not moved, so be sure to plant them where you want them to be.

Shrubs and perennials are lower maintenance than annuals, and since perennials benefit from being divided every few years, they could be a good bet, augmented by bulbs and, in summer, by annuals. These are often flamboyantly colourful. Remember to deadhead to prolong flowering. Some perennials give very good value, such as Phlomis russeliana, which flowers from late spring to early autumn and has attractive seedheads in winter, dianthus with its pink flowers and silver-grey foliage, and penstemon, which flowers to first frosts.

Also, when planning a colourful border or bed, remember to choose plants that will flower at the same time in order to achieve the desired effect. As well as colour and flowering season, think about height and contrasts in shape. Tall, upright plants, such as irises, daylilies and foxgloves, mix well with those that have wide flowerheads, such as sedum and yarrow, and spherical flowerheads, such as alliums.

Foliage is an integral part of any garden display, whether used as background or as a focus in its own right. Shrubs such as cotinus and Fatsia japonica have eye-catchingly colourful foliage. Others, including berberis, viburnum and holly, have red or orange berries in autumn and flowers in spring.

Among all the possibilities, don’t forget roses. A fragrant shrub, climber or floribunda that blooms continuously throughout the summer can do wonders for your garden.

Year-round colour

Spring brings sunny yellows and greens, fresh pinks and blues and white morphing into the vivid mix of summer and the warm burnt oranges and deep reds of autumn. Come winter, if you think of the garden as being a colour-free zone, think again. Flowers, berries and dramatic foliage can lift it from the gloom.

Spring 

Shrubs: azaleas, California lilac, euphorbia, forsythia

Perennials: aubrieta, elephant’s ears, forget-me-nots, polyanthus

Bulbs: crocuses, daffodils, grape hyacinths, tulips, anemones

Summer

Shrubs: rock roses, fuchsia, potentilla, mock orange, buddleia

Perennials: delphiniums, peonies, crocosmias, geraniums

Bulbs: alliums, irises, lilies, gladioli, begonias

Annuals: Busy Lizzies, lobelias, heliotropes, cornflowers, poppies, marigolds, tobacco plants

Autumn

Shrubs: spindle tree, rhus, plumbago, Japanese maple

Perennials: chrysanthemums, asters, Chinese lanterns, ligularia, Michaelmas daisies

Bulbs: colchicums, nerines

Winter

Shrubs: winter jasmine, mahonia, dogwood, daphne, skimmia, winter heath, clematis

Perennials: winter pansies, violas, hellebores, hepatica

Bulbs: snowdrops, aconites, cyclamen (grows from tubers)

 

You can have a glorious
mass of different colours.

 

Garden colour schemes

Colour schemes

The colour wheel, a circle divided into six or twelve, shows how colours relate to each other and gives clues to the effects of juxtaposing them. For gardeners, the six-point colour wheel, made up of primary (red, yellow, blue) and secondary (orange, green, purple) colours, is a useful guide. It may be a good idea to make one as a reference (look it up online), and bear in mind the enormous variety of shades, tones and tints that exist in gardening and in nature, so the colours can be liberally interpreted.

Complementary Also called opposing, these are colours that fall directly opposite each other on the colour wheel: red and green, yellow and purple, blue and orange. Positioned next to each other, they seem especially vibrant, so complementary colour schemes can be eye-catching and lively. A small area of hot complementaries balances a larger area of cool ones.

Contrasting Colours equally spaced around the colour wheel are thought of as contrasting: orange, green, purple. They tend to go well grouped together – vibrant colours and green foliage.

Harmonising Analogous, or harmonising, colours are those that lie next to each other on the colour wheel, e.g. red and purple, yellow and orange, blue and green. Harmonious colour schemes can be elegant and serene, or, with hot colours, invigorating.

Monochromatic Using just one colour can be very effective, but challenging. Some contrast is necessary or the result can seem somewhat bland, so use all the shades, tones and tints at your disposal, and plenty of interesting foliage.

 

Harmonious colour schemes
can be elegant and serene.

 

Gardens to visit in 2017

Gardens to visit

If you’re short of ideas, or just want to soak up the atmosphere created by talented garden designers, why not take a trip to one of the hundreds of gardens around the country that are open to visitors? Many show the influence of Gertrude Jekyll (born in 1843), whom we have to thank for introducing colour-themed ‘rooms’ into the garden. Some are renowned for something extra special:

The white garden at Sissinghurst, Kent

Hidcote, in Gloucestershire, famed for its twin red borders

The winter gardens at Dunham Massey, Cheshire

Great Dixter in East Sussex, for unusual colour schemes

Beth Chatto Gardens, Essex, for garden artistry

The herbaceous border at Arley Hall, Cheshire

Harlow Carr, the RHS garden in Yorkshire, pushing the boundaries of design and planting styles

Barnsdale Gardens, Rutland, described as a ‘theme park for gardeners’

Check opening times and facilities before visiting.

 

Websites

letsgogardening.co.uk

nationaltrust.org.uk

rhs.org.uk

wyevalegardencentres.co.uk

 

 


 

#gardeningforcolour

#spring

Win a Beautiful Bouquet & Bottle of Bubbly!

Win Flowers & Champagne

Win a Beautiful Bouquet & Bottle of Bubbly!

 To celebrate our 35th anniversary and the launch of our brand new 2017 Dairy Diary and Dairy Diary Favourites cookbook, we have a fabulous competition to win a bouquet and bottle of bubbly.

This delightful gift set combines a stunning Quartz bouquet with a fresh & lively bottle of Pierson Whitaker Premier Cru Champagne. Wow.

For your chance to win click here.

ENTER

Good luck everyone!

 

#win #competition #appleyardflowers

2017 Dairy Diary and Brand New Cookbook Big Reveal!

2017 Dairy Diary and Brand New Cookbook Big Reveal!

Plus Win a Beautiful Bouquet & Bottle of Bubbly!

I’m so excited to, at last, reveal the brand new Dairy Diary and cookbook! The books began production in April last year, so it seems such a long time before I can show them off.

Ta daa, here they are….

 

Dairy Diary 2017 and Dairy Diary Favourites Cookbook

 

Dairy Diary 2017Dairy Diary 2017

With an on-trend lilac and metallic coloured cover, this is one of the prettiest we have produced.

As always, each week showcases a fabulous easy-to-follow triple-tested recipe and has so many fascinating features that I don’t know where to begin! I guess, you’ll just have to buy it to find out more.

Click here for a sneak peek and to order.

 

Dairy Diary Favourites CookbookDairy Diary Favourites

Dairy Diary celebrates its 35th anniversary this year. Can you believe it?!

Though it’s become such a national institution, sometimes it feels as though it’s been published forever. To celebrate this anniversary we have created this gorgeous cookbook packed with 100 of the best-loved and most-requested recipes from the past 35 years, including at least one from every edition.

Rediscover your old favourites with stunning new photographs and be inspired by new recipes that could become an integral part of your recipe repertoire.

Click here to find out more and order your copy.

 


 

Now, I’m going to share my favourite Dairy Diary recipe.
It took me ages to choose, as there are so many that I love,
but here’s the cream of the crop (literally).

 

Pear & Ginger Trifle

A delicious twist on a classic trifle, this combination of ginger cake and pear with custard and cream from the brand new Dairy Diary Favourites cookbook is wonderful.

Pear & Ginger Trifle

  • Servings: 6
  • Time: 25 minutes plus cooling
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 437 per portion
Fat 30g (16g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Pears 450g (1lb), peeled, cored and sliced
  • Cider 150ml (¼ pint)
  • Soft brown sugar 50g (2oz)
  • Jamaica ginger cake ½ loaf, sliced
  • Custard 450ml (¾ pint), cooled
  • Double cream 250ml (9fl oz), whipped
  • Orange and lime 1 of each, grated zest to decorate (optional)

Instructions

  1. Put the pears in a pan with the cider and sugar. Simmer for about 10 minutes until the pears are soft, then leave to cool.
  2. Arrange the ginger cake in a glass serving dish and pour the pears and cider over the top. Top with cooled custard and leave to set.
  3. Spoon whipped cream around the edge of the custard and sprinkle with orange and lime zest, if using. Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.

Cook’s tip
For a Jamaican rum trifle, arrange the ginger cake in the base of the dish, drizzle with 4 tbsp dark rum, then top with 4 slices fresh pineapple, diced. Pour over the custard and top with cream and zest as above.


 

And as well as sharing my favourite recipe I’m also
giving you the opportunity to win a fantastic prize!

 

Win a Beautiful Bouquet & Bottle of Bubbly!

Win a Beautiful Bouquet & Bottle of Bubbly!

This delightful gift set combines a stunning Quartz bouquet with a fresh & lively bottle of Pierson Whitaker Premier Cru Champagne and is worth £100!

For your chance to win click here.

 

ENTER

 

Good luck everyone!

 

#win #competition #appleyardflowers #millionssold #recipe #trifle

Recipe of the Week: Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate

 

Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 10 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 282 per portion
Fat 17g (7.6g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Milk chocolate 40g (1½oz), broken up
  • Smooth peanut butter 2 tbsp
  • Milk 350ml (12fl oz)
  • Whipped cream 2 tbsp, optional
  • Mini marshmallows and grated chocolate to serve, optional

Instructions

  1. Place chocolate, peanut butter and milk in a pan. Heat gently, whisking, until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth.
  2. Pour into 2 mugs and top with whipped cream and marshmallows and/or grated chocolate, if using.

A Dairy Diary recipe.

#recipeoftheweek


 

Win a Year of Designer Flowers at Debenhams

.

Win a Year of Designer Flowers at DebenhamsTo celebrate the launch of Dairy Diary 2016 we are offering you the chance to win a year’s supply of bouquets, one a month for twelve months from the Designer Flowers range at Debenhams Flowers.

Fill your home with fantastic flowers or
share the joy with family and friends
(you can select a recipient for each month).
The choice is yours!

The bouquets are kindly donated by Debenhams who are also offering an exclusive £5 voucher* for everyone who enters the competition.

Take a look at Designer Flowers at Debenhams.

Enter

 

 


 

#competition #debenhams #flowers

Competition: Win a Year of Debenhams Flowers

Win a Year of Designer Flowers at Debenhams

To celebrate the launch of Dairy Diary 2016 we are offering you the chance to win a year’s supply of bouquets, one a month for twelve months from the Designer Flowers range at Debenhams Flowers.

Fill your home with fantastic flowers or
share the joy with family and friends
(you can select a recipient for each month).
The choice is yours!

The bouquets are kindly donated by Debenhams who are also offering an exclusive £5 voucher* for everyone who enters the competition.

Take a look at Designer Flowers at Debenhams.

Enter

 

 


Dairy Diary 2016

Dairy Diary 2016Britain’s best-selling home diary provides day-to-day inspiration and practical information at your fingertips and all faster to access than any mobile device!

  • Clear week-to-view 2016 diary
  • Easy-to-prepare inspirational recipes
  • Essential kitchen and home information
  • Budgeting, conversions, addresses,
  • and lots more…

That’s why it’s Britain’s favourite.

READ MORE

Competition: Win a Year of Debenhams Flowers

Win a Year of Designer Flowers at Debenhams.

.

Win a Year of Designer Flowers at Debenhams

To celebrate the launch of Dairy Diary 2016 we are offering you the chance to win a year’s supply of bouquets, one a month for twelve months from the Designer Flowers range at Debenhams Flowers.

Fill your home with fantastic flowers or
share the joy with family and friends
(you can select a recipient for each month).
The choice is yours!

The bouquets are kindly donated by Debenhams who are also offering an exclusive £5 voucher* for everyone who enters the competition.

Take a look at Designer Flowers at Debenhams.

Enter

 

 


 

 

Dairy Diary 2016

Dairy Diary 2016Britain’s best-selling home diary provides day-to-day inspiration and practical information at your fingertips and all faster to access than any mobile device!

  • Clear week-to-view 2016 diary
  • Easy-to-prepare inspirational recipes
  • Essential kitchen and home information
  • Budgeting, conversions, addresses,
  • and lots more…

That’s why it’s Britain’s favourite.

READ MORE

 

 

 

 

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